Does this $20-a-month cord-cutter service work as promised?

January 26, 2015 11:01 AM

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Does this $20-a-month cord-cutter service work as promised?

Sling TV, a $20-a-month service for cord-cutters, made quite the debut earlier this month, winning our Best of CES award amid a flood of attention from press and customers alike. But can the app really live up to its promise to "Take Back TV"? I've had access to the beta for a few days, allowing me to get an early look before the first batch of invitations for pre-registered customers goes out tonight at midnight ET. As far as I can tell, the answer is both yes and no. Internet TV is finally real, but it has a lot of strings left over from the old days of pay-TV, and not just because it's coming from the folks at Dish Network. Getting must-have content from the likes of ESPN has its costs, and those might make the $20 entry fee higher than you're willing to pay.

For now, Sling TV is available on Android, iOS and Roku. Access on the web and through Amazon's Fire TV hardware is in the works, but for the moment, that's it. In any case, after a long weekend of watching ESPN and the Cooking Channel testing, it's clear that Dish has already accumulated plenty of ...

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